When I was a young boy, I wanted to sail around the world…

Well, after surviving a Very. Early. Morning. to begin my trans-Tasman trip, I managed to walk my mother into the ground around Wellington – and the botanic gardens were a delight – some of the millions of garden photos to come.

But my major achievement is the first FO in my LLS. Granted, it was frogged 3 times between its first and last cast on (3/12, 4/12 and 8/12 – 14/12), I have finally twigged onto the fabulousness of the lifeline (used twice) and want to say THANK YOU! to Jacqui for the tip on how to go about putting one in. Saved me hours towards the end.

Introducing, Elwing’s Shawl – the Swallowtail Shawl knitted in Shaefer Anne on 4mm needles with no nupps. It used just over half a skein – I’ll confirm that measurement when I’m in close proximity to a digital scale again, and just under a week to knit semi-solidly, including 2 rip-backs to the lifeline.

I’ve called it Elwing’s Shawl, as I’m going to give everything I knit for the duration of my thesis a Tolkien-related title. Elwing was the elvish wife of Earendil the Mariner, who took one of the Silmarils back to the Valar, and was punished by never being allowed to return to the land of men for trespassing in the land of the guardians. Instead, he sails across the sky each night with the Silmaril (this one was diamond-like, the other two were the equivalent to a ruby and a sapphire) bound to his brow. He is still seen today, we call him the Evening Star. (This story can be slightly confusing, especially when we come to the story of Arwen Undomiel, which means Evenstar, but that’s another story).
Elwing, an elf, and Earendil a mortal left behind in the realm of Middle-earth twin sons – Elros and Elrond. The twins where given the option to choose their race, seeing as they were half-elven. Elros chose mankind, and his descendant was Aragorn the Ranger, and Elrond chose elfkind. His daughter Arwen, through her father’s half-elven lineage, was able to choose a mortal life to be with Aragorn because of this.

Yes, it is a boring digression, so back to the woman in question. Elwing means “Star-spray” and she was given a tower at the edge of night to watch for Earendil’s return in the morning by the guardian powers. Elwing would take the shape of an Albatross to meet his ship as it returned to the Undying lands. The Shaefer I have has a very delicate colourway, light and clean like the morning hues, and like the rising sun on the white wings of an albatross.

Close up of the budding lace….

Close up of the scalloped edge… see the notes on Rav for more details.

And here is the size against me – I like it, perfect size.

Anyway, I’ll be on and off. I haven’t read my blogroll in over 3 weeks, and I’m sure it’s going to be scary. The shawl was my holiday, and now I have to start working on the thesis. The weather’s been great – far better than what I see Aussie is having. It’s good to be home, and great to see the family.

I’ll update with photos as I go.